Important Uniform Updates

Mr Corbett.

By Mr Scott Corbett, Acting Assistant Principal Students

I hope that you had a wonderful time over the school holidays and had the opportunity to spend time with your children, free from the demands of a busy school day.

As we enter into a new term and prepare to transition to the winter uniform, I wanted to take this opportunity to share some thoughts on our uniform policy and the importance it plays in our daily life at the College. At the end of last term, I spoke to students at an assembly about three reasons I believe the uniform is an important part of Radford: respect, boundaries and belonging.

While I acknowledge that there is a plethora of opinions on the uniform and some who wish things were different, we believe that how students wear their uniform within our current rules, is a part of the respect we aim to instil in Radford students; respect for the College, the staff, their peers and themselves. Secondly, we believe it is important to set boundaries for our young people to show our care and to allow them to benefit from the reputation of our College. When your child graduates from Radford, I am confident they will benefit from the reputation of being a Collegian. The boundaries we set allow us to hold students to a high standard, which forms a part of this reputation.

Thirdly, my hope for all students at Radford is that they feel like they belong. Our uniform is a part of the way we create a sense of belonging. For me, a sense of belonging is central to having a life that you can thrive in. We want our students to be a part of our community. We want them to feel like they belong, and we want them to look like they belong. I acknowledge that how people dress relates to their sense of identity, which can be more difficult when you have a uniform, yet it is an important part of belonging. We want to celebrate the diversity of all our students, from gender, sexuality, religion, cultural background, skills, interests, passions and everything that makes them great. I always want to hear thoughts on how we can make Radford a place that respects individuality and provides opportunities for this whilst students wear the uniform with pride.

Fulfilling a young person's need for belonging is so important to a flourishing life, but it won’t come from inaction. It is an active and intentional process for all of us to embark on. I encourage you to speak with your child about their sense of belonging at Radford. If they don’t feel like they can foster a sense of belonging, please tell them they can talk to me, their head of year or mentor. Let us help them in that process, so that everyone at Radford can belong.

To support students in noticing where our boundaries are, in Term 2 we will issue lunchtime detentions for those who choose to continually not belong and wear the uniform incorrectly. Our hope is this will assist in creating a sense of clarity for students and provide us with an opportunity to discuss their sense of belonging at Radford.

We are providing a two-week transition-period during Week 1 and 2 of this term, during which students can either wear their summer or winter uniform, but not a combination of both. By the beginning of Week 3, students must wear their winter uniform. During this transition period, please try on the winter uniform items you have at home. If something doesn’t fit, this is a great opportunity go and purchase items that do fit. The uniform shop opening hours can be found here.

Principal Fiona Godfrey recently spoke to the students about a few changes. An updated policy can be found here. Additionally, she mentioned that we have begun the process of reviewing the whole uniform. Whilst this will take some time to finalise, I hope that it provides an opportunity for you to share your thoughts on the uniform and collaborate with the College to make the new iteration as good as it can be.

Thank you for your ongoing support of the College through your assistance with your child’s uniform. We are proud of the reputation that Radford College holds and as its current custodians (staff, students and families alike), we have the responsibility to maintain it across all facets of College life. As always, my door is open if you want to discuss the uniform or a sense of belonging at Radford.